Special Issue "Mycotoxins and Related Fungi in Crops"

A special issue of Toxins (ISSN 2072-6651). This special issue belongs to the section "Mycotoxins".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Paola Giorni
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Sustainable Crop Production—DIPROVES, Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Science, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, via Emilia Parmense 84, 29122 Piacenza, Italy
Interests: mycotoxins; fungal characterization; ecological factors; fungal interactions with the environment, plant and other microorganisms

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Nowadays, mycotoxins in crops probably represent the greatest threat to food safety worldwide. Together with the more famous fumonisins, aflatoxins, and ochratoxins, new mycotoxins such as sterigmatocystin, enniatins, beauvericin, and moniliformin have recently been found in different crops, often simultaneously, and thus increase the need to better define mycotoxin-producing species and to increase knowledge on plant–fungi interactions and the possible role of environmental factors in their development.

This Special Issue will focus on different aspects of the plant–pathogen–environment triangle. Monitoring and identification of mycotoxin-producing species in different crops, as well as signaling of new mycotoxigenic species, represents the first essential step in understanding the role of different factors involved in pathogenesis. In particular, both in vitro experiments and in-field trials conducted to investigate specific fungal ecological needs could greatly assist in the understanding of fungal behavior, also taking into account the possibility that more than one mycotoxin-producing species could be present on the same crop at the same time, creating interactions that have so far been little investigated for their ability to influence mycotoxin production. A possible defensive role of plant constituents against fungal contamination and their influence on mycotoxin production needs to be investigated, as well as the mitigation effect of different agronomic practices.

Climate, and in particular, climate change, can have great influence on both plant wellness and fungal development, and meteorological data have to be considered together with single or multi fungal dynamics, both in vitro and in vivo, to develop or improve predictive models and obtain a reliable tool for mycotoxin containment in field. Moreover, the quantification of fungal population and mycotoxins during the post-harvest period, including the possible role of post-harvest management of crops, could provide important information to assess mycotoxin risk.

Dr. Paola Giorni
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • mycotoxins
  • mycotoxins producing fungi
  • fungal ecology
  • fungal co-presence
  • presence of multi-mycotoxins
  • crops
  • predictive models
  • plant constituents
  • agronomic practices
  • post-harvest

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle
Monitoring Phenolic Compounds in Rice during the Growing Season in Relation to Fungal and Mycotoxin Contamination
Toxins 2020, 12(5), 341; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins12050341 - 22 May 2020
Abstract
Total phenolic content (TPC) and several phenolic acids present in rice grains were compared with fungal infection and mycotoxin presence throughout the growing season. Samples of 4 rice varieties were collected in 2018 and 2019 at 3 different plant phenological stages. Total fungal [...] Read more.
Total phenolic content (TPC) and several phenolic acids present in rice grains were compared with fungal infection and mycotoxin presence throughout the growing season. Samples of 4 rice varieties were collected in 2018 and 2019 at 3 different plant phenological stages. Total fungal and main mycotoxigenic fungi incidence were checked and mycotoxin content was analysed. On the same samples, TPC and the concentration of 8 main phenolic acids (chlorogenic acid, caffeic acid, syringic acid, 4-hydroxybenzoic acid (4-HBA), p-coumaric acid, ferulic acid, protocatecuic acid and gallic acid) were measured. The results showed significant differences between years for both fungal incidence and mycotoxin presence. In 2018 there was a lower fungal presence (42%) than in 2019 (57%) while, regarding mycotoxins, sterigmatocystin (STC) was found in almost all the samples and at all growing stages while deoxynivalenol (DON) was found particularly during ripening. An interesting relationship was found between fungal incidence and TPC, and some phenolic acids seemed to be more involved than others in the plant defense system. Ferulic acid and protocatecuic acid showed a different trend during the growing season depending on fungal incidence and resulted to be positively correlated with p-coumaric acid and 4-HBA that seem involved in mycotoxin containment in field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycotoxins and Related Fungi in Crops)
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Open AccessArticle
Fusarium graminearum FgCWM1 Encodes a Cell Wall Mannoprotein Conferring Sensitivity to Salicylic Acid and Virulence to Wheat
Toxins 2019, 11(11), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11110628 - 29 Oct 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Fusarium graminearum causes Fusarium head blight (FHB), a devastating disease of wheat. Salicylic acid (SA) is involved in the resistance of wheat to F. graminearum. Cell wall mannoprotein (CWM) is known to trigger defense responses in plants, but its role in the [...] Read more.
Fusarium graminearum causes Fusarium head blight (FHB), a devastating disease of wheat. Salicylic acid (SA) is involved in the resistance of wheat to F. graminearum. Cell wall mannoprotein (CWM) is known to trigger defense responses in plants, but its role in the pathogenicity of F. graminearum remains unclear. Here, we characterized FgCWM1 (FG05_11315), encoding a CWM in F. graminearum. FgCWM1 was highly expressed in wheat spikes by 24 h after initial inoculation and was upregulated by SA. Disruption of FgCWM1FgCWM1) reduced mannose and protein accumulation in the fungal cell wall, especially under SA treatment, and resulted in defective fungal cell walls, leading to increased fungal sensitivity to SA. The positive role of FgCWM1 in mannose and protein accumulation was confirmed by its expression in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Compared with wild type (WT), ΔFgCWM1 exhibited reduced pathogenicity toward wheat, but it produced the same amount of deoxynivalenol both in culture and in spikes. Complementation of ΔFgCWM1 with FgCWM1 restored the WT phenotype. Localization analyses revealed that FgCWM1 was distributed on the cell wall, consistent with its structural role. Thus, FgCWM1 encodes a CWM protein that plays an important role in the cell wall integrity and pathogenicity of F. graminearum. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycotoxins and Related Fungi in Crops)
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Open AccessCommunication
A Preliminary Survey of Cultured Fusaria from Symptomatic Legume Grains in North-Eastern Poland
Toxins 2019, 11(10), 569; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins11100569 - 29 Sep 2019
Abstract
Legumes are amongst the most promising crops to satisfy the increasing demand for protein-rich food and feed. Today, however, their cultivation in Europe is low, while European agriculture faces a deficit of protein-rich feed, of which the largest part is met by imported [...] Read more.
Legumes are amongst the most promising crops to satisfy the increasing demand for protein-rich food and feed. Today, however, their cultivation in Europe is low, while European agriculture faces a deficit of protein-rich feed, of which the largest part is met by imported soybean. It has been suggested that some legumes can at least partially substitute for soybean in different types of feed. Despite their benefits, legumes may also remain a significant concern to human and animal health, especially regarding grain contamination with Fusaria and their mycotoxins. In this study, we determined the species composition of Fusarium field isolates recovered from diseased grains of various legumes. Our results showed that Fusarium avenaceum was mainly responsible for grain deterioration of common vetch, faba bean, and blue lupine. Besides, we found that F. equiseti also appeared to be a major pathogen of common vetch. This study is the first ever to report common vetch as a host for F. tricinctum, F. equiseti, and F. graminearum sensu stricto. Our results indicate that the composition of toxigenic Fusaria associated with grains of legumes is different than that previously observed in cereal grains. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mycotoxins and Related Fungi in Crops)
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